We had a great weekend. Friday night Seth and his boy, Justin, came over, as well as Nick, and his wife Sommer and their youngest girl, Grace. I fixed stromboli and salad and Sommer and I both provided some leftover cookies for dessert. I was absolutely exhausted at 5 before everyone came over. By 10 when they were all gone, I was ready to collapse.
Then Saturday morning they were back around 8:30. Dave fixed breakfast (hobo skillet with ham steak, deer sausage, bacon from mom, potatoes, scrambled eggs and we made our own sausage/ham/bacon gravy to put on top and we also had a sticky bun - Seth, Nick, Justin, Dave & I ate every bit of all of that food and were absolutely stuffed). Then I made Mexican meatloaf, mac n cheese and peas for lunch. No one even ate any when I got it ready cuz they were still full from breakfast. But oh well. I had some. :) And they ate a bit later. Trouble is, with all my eating, I've gained another 5 lbs in the last couple weeks, for a total of 9 lbs of weight gain. I know it's not all the baby or things related to the baby...I've been eating too much, most likely.
So, all in all, the guys got a TON of work done this weekend. We tore out the shower Friday night and realized that there was a lot of water damage from where it had been leaking. Not only was the subfloor damaged but also the bottom wall plates. So Sat a.m. they tore out all the walls for the master bath, master bedroom closet, laundry room closet, as well as part of the ceiling over the closets and old shower, which we guess was damaged and not repaired very well after a house fire (one of the previous owners told us about that). So, anyways, right now, the laundry room, bathroom and closets are one big open space. All that's left of the bathroom is a toilet. That looks out the door into the shed. Nice! Then they tore out a section about 12' x 8' of the subfloor. They reinforced some of the floor joists that had water damage or just seemed weak, and after the guys left, Dave & I worked on laying in some new subfloor. We got that done about 9:30 Saturday night.
The guys are planning to come back Tuesday night to help Dave frame the new walls and replace the ceiling drywall. We are going to totally reconfigure the bathroom/closet area...we figure we might as well start over with a new layout considering the walls all had to be removed and everything has to be replaced. So, we are no longer going to have a door from the laundry room to the bathroom. The bathroom will only be entered from the master bedroom. And there will be a walk-in closet off the bathroom. We will also build another closet in the laundry room, next to the water softener. So the water softener will end up inside the new closet.
I'm very excited about all this new stuff. I'm planning out how we will decorate the new bathroom, etc. (And that really annoys Dave since he is like, "Katie, we don't even have walls yet!!"
I'm off work today because of MLK day, and totally enjoying it. I'm always so wound up after FPU on Sunday nights I have trouble going to sleep and then have to get up at 5-5:30. Well, not today!! Dave let me sleep in :)
Our homework this week for FPU was to do the full-blown budget. I was surprised when we got home and Dave, the free spirit, as Dave Ramsey refers to his type, suggested that we not play cards (like I mentioned) but that we sit down and do our written budget. Wow! So, that's exactly what we did. It was painful to look at on paper.
Where we are is that we've spent or are about to spend nearly all of our current emergency fund (on the house mostly, and partially on the midwife). It is very depressing to see how much money we've "blown" this year. But we do have to look at what we've gotten for that money. The house is going to be much nicer than it was. There is no way that at this point last year, and when I decided to quit my engineering job, could we have known how much repairing the house would truly cost. We had never done this type of work before. We had no clue. We thought it would cost maybe $6000 total. I think we've spent 3-4 times that so far. But we are fixing all the plumbing issues, and things that we would hate to pass onto another owner...and we've nearly paid for all our expected expenses associated with the birth of the baby. The other awesome thing is how much that we've both learned about home repair/maintenance/remodeling thru this process. That alone is priceless. Anyways, it is depressing for us to look at how far we've backslid on the "Baby Steps" this year, but we have to just take a deep breath and be willing to start over.
So, at this point, we want to get our emergency fund built back up (since we paused our retirement savings again recently to do just that) but we had to cut a lot of areas in our budget to be able to do that (home improvements - so how we will ever get the house back to normal I'm not sure..., tool money, blow money, vacation money, restaurant money, etc.). The good news is that by the time the baby comes, we can probably manage to save $4,200 by all our budget cutting. That will not even come close to a full 6 month emergency fund. But it's a start. And we have to be happy with that or both work harder...or something....
I think what is really good is that we BOTH want this budget to work this time. A lot of times we'll lay it out on paper then one or even both of us doesn't actually attempt to LIVE on the budget...so it's all theory that doesn't get put into practice. This time we want to actually LIVE on it. And what helps motivate us there is that we're at a desperate point that if we choose to ignore the budget again, soon we'll either have to borrow money again (which neither of us wants to do ever again in our lives), or we will not have enough money to buy groceries or something important like that because we spent it on new drywall (not that that's not important either...)
FPU last night was awesome too, by the way. We split up into 2 discussion groups. We absolutely LOVE our group. We had 14 people in there last night and we just talked and talked and talked. We were all laughing and encouraging each other, etc. I can see that one couple in particular is seeing the benefits of the written budget plan because they can decide on paper before the month begins what's important and they won't have to fight about it later on. They said it would help them get on the same page. Another couple is learning things that her father has always told her...but it's just nice to hear it from someone else. I'm just so happy thinking about our group. Awesome things are happening. And it is so encouraging to know we're not the only couple in a tight spot financially right now and we can all cheer each other on to better places.
And in the first 3 weeks, the 34 class members have already paid off over $14,000 and saved over $11,000 and avoided over $158,000 of credit offers. How awesome is that?!?!?